3 years ago

Histologic transformation of non-small-cell lung cancer in brain metastases

Meng Jiang, Xiaolong Zhu, Xiao Han, Haiyan Jing, Tao Han, Qiang Li, Xiao Ding



Treatment strategies differ substantially for small-cell lung cancer (SCLC), adenocarcinoma and squamous-cell cancer (SCC). Therefore, it is of important significance to identify histologic transformation. There are no reports on histologic transformation in brain metastases (BM) to date. The aim of this study was to analyze the histologic transformation in BM for the first time.


Medical records were reviewed and patients with both resected BM and primary tumors were examined retrospectively. The histologic diagnosis was confirmed by H&E staining, and additional diagnostic immunohistochemical stains were performed at the discretion of the pathologists. Characteristics of histologic transformation in BM were analyzed.


3 of 24 patients (12.5%) with both resected BM and primary non-small-cell lung cancers (NSCLCs) had evidence of histologic transformation in BM. One case with SCC transformed to adenocarcinoma in brain, one case with adenocarcinoma transformed to SCLC, and another case with adenocarcinoma transformed to SCC. The three cases of histologic transformation were all spontaneous and had not tested gene status.


We disclosed the histologic transformation of NSCLC in BM at a frequency not as low as expected, and speculated it as an evolution promoted by intratumor heterogeneity, though it warrants further prospective multi-institution investigations with comprehensive molecular analysis. Our findings provided further impetus for surgery when the metastatic or recurrent lesion is resectable, and repeated pathologic evaluation to help tailor individualized treatment.

Publisher URL: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10147-018-1369-1

DOI: 10.1007/s10147-018-1369-1

You might also like
Discover & Discuss Important Research

Keeping up-to-date with research can feel impossible, with papers being published faster than you'll ever be able to read them. That's where Researcher comes in: we're simplifying discovery and making important discussions happen. With over 19,000 sources, including peer-reviewed journals, preprints, blogs, universities, podcasts and Live events across 10 research areas, you'll never miss what's important to you. It's like social media, but better. Oh, and we should mention - it's free.

  • Download from Google Play
  • Download from App Store
  • Download from AppInChina

Researcher displays publicly available abstracts and doesn’t host any full article content. If the content is open access, we will direct clicks from the abstracts to the publisher website and display the PDF copy on our platform. Clicks to view the full text will be directed to the publisher website, where only users with subscriptions or access through their institution are able to view the full article.